After graduating with a BA Hons degree in Graphic Design in the UK, I proceeded to make a successful career as a graphic designer and Illustrator for over twenty years. Since moving to Canada, I have been pursuing my passion for encaustic painting. A sense of place is very important to me and painting the Ontario landscape has grounded me creating an attachment to this place I now call home.
Over the years, I have developed a love for the physical wax surface of encaustic, which when applied in its molten state has both immediacy and spontaneity allowing my paintings develop a life of their own. I have learnt to control the medium but, when the heat hits the wax, it is always a surprise. There are so many subtleties of heat and how the wax and pigment respond to it. You have to embrace the accident and the mystery with encaustic.
I apply the pigmented wax in many luminous and complex layers. Oil pastels, raw pigments, shellac and graphite are incorporated and fused into the surface with a blow torch. Each layer is reheated to be made smooth or built up to create texture and often etched into by delicate mark making or carved to reveal the history of the work.
I aim to suggest my subject and my emotional connection to it, exploring the balance between representation and invention with the hope a kind of distillation has taken place where the essence of the Ontario Landscape comes softly through.